The Future of Customer Service

7 Nov

As social media continues to integrate into company strategies, and consumers learn the power they have through social media, companies should look to the horizon for the next developments in online customer service.

According to Guy Stevens, a few trends will continue to influence customer service. Help networks, consumer-generated networks where they can help each other with products, essentially decentralize traditional customer service. The larger market of smart phones will also mean customers can seek help whenever and wherever, and still expect an efficient response. Companies must optimize their social media for these devices. In addition, as if there weren’t enough ways to complain online, new sites like Amplicate allow customers to come together on countless products all in one place. Companies must stay aware of these new sites so they can pick up on developing issues surrounding their products.

New developments can benefit companies as well. Klout scores are calculated based on customer’s social media activity and can help companies identify online influencers. Companies like Starbucks, CoverGirl, and Virgin America have already started using the scores to send promotions to influential customers, according to David Teicher. While this technology is still being tweaked to fit company strategies and to test its accuracy, the possibilities of similar technologies are endless.

The technologies of online retailers are changing as well. Last year Wal-Mart made improvements modeling Amazon’s features. They include recommendations and personalization, which have basically become commonplace on the majority of online retailers. In addition, Walmart.com has started to sell third-party vendor products, exactly like Amazon. These two large companies have long been the examples of successful retailers, so their websites should continue to be on top of new e-commerce developments.

The internet provides a wide range of technologies and applications for companies and their customer service. The key is to know your customers, how they use the internet, and the tools that provide the best service.

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